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Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Community
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Do you think this sounds like IBS? Or should I push for more testing?

About 10 months ago I started a recurring pattern of the runs, about once a month I’ll have significant cramping followed by a blowout and then oddly my bowel habit will go right back to normal out of nowhere. Once I had a complete blowout followed by a normal bowel movement the same day. Often times there will be mucus in the normal movements afterwards too, not a lot like with the diarrhea but just more than normal.

My Dr has done several in depth blood tests on my liver and kidney functions (once the stool looked pale) everything was normal, several CBC’s and everything looked good. The only oddity was my B12 was ever so slightly low once, I think the low cut off was 300 and I tested like 298 or 297 which corrected itself a month later, still lower end normal but normal.

The Dr is thinking IBS as I have been under a ton of stress starting 10 months ago, we moved, I started new work, other health concerns popped up and I’ve been an anxiety riddled wreck for all of it. I can see the direct impact as once after seeing a specialist for other concerns I had a blowout and I’d image that did directly correlate to my anxiety with that appointment.

I would say I’m more gassy and bloated overall but I can’t say that for sure, it’s the kind of thing you don’t notice until you think about it and then you tend to be hyper aware.

So ultimately, I have had a blowout about once a month for 10 months now, the entirety of which I’ve been under immense stressors. I know there isn’t a definitive test for Chrohn’s disease or Ulcerative Colitis but I was wondering if I should push for more tests or just work on my stress and trust it’s IBS?

The Dr said he wasn’t terribly worried about IBD as my inflammation markers are all very normal. He also took a basic stool sample to check for parasites (and whatever else that checks for? Would like to know if you have input) which came back negative.
2 Responses
15695260 tn?1549596713
Hello and welcome to the forum.  We appreciate your question and encourage you to keep working with your doctor.  It sounds like they are no fuss and realistic in their approach which can be very helpful.  You do have symptoms of IBS https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/irritable-bowel-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20360016  There also is not really a diagnostic test beyond questionnaires for IBS but your doctor certainly can give you those types of Q & A tests.  But stress is a major trigger for IBS and you describe living under a great deal of that recently.  Prevention may also help you with regards to this such as counseling, treating the anxiety, mindfulness training, relaxation and meditation, etc.  In my opinion, it may work for you to treat IBS while working on the anxiety and stress to see if this resolves and if not, move on at that time for new causes.  Keep us updated on your progress.
2 Comments
Thank you, I do think it is IBS as I have a big appointment tomorrow and I’ve been nervous for a few days and today I had a bad session of cramps/diahhrea, which lined up perfectly with my nerves on my appointment tomorrow. So I really think it’s mostly stress related.
I wish you best of luck at your appointment.  Please update us after you speak to your doctor.  This is treatable, so please remember that. We'll look forward to hearing from you.
15695260 tn?1549596713
Have you had any follow up about this issue?  Here is another article to look at from MedHelp. https://www.medhelp.org/gastroenterology/articles/Irritable-Bowel-Syndrome-IBS-Overview/233
2 Comments
I have an appointment on the 7th next month. I’ve had one more session of blowout but that’s it. Going right back to normal the next day. I do notice sometimes even my regular movements have more urgency behind the urge to go to the restroom but that may just be me thinking about it more than normal. I did feel occasional sharp radiating type pains in my lower gut area after that day but that doesn’t say much as that can accompany anything from poor diet to chrons to cancer from what I’ve read so that by itself isn’t definitive.

I should mention the level of my stress, this started right after my fiancée and I moved, I was having lymph nodes checked out in my neck that are still swollen 12 months later (biopsy just came back normal thankfully must be scar nodes they said) so obviously that was scary with all the tests their running, I work part time nearly ful time to pay bills while being a student in an academic program that is strict as all get out. So my stress for the last year has been huge, this issue adds to it as well but I’d imagine that would be enough to make anyone’s digestion cycle a little upset.
I do think that you go back to normal and this is fairly infrequent is a good sign. Managing stress is a huge part of our life, isn't it?  I'm sorry you are under so much.  Here are some tips for just that part of it. https://www.webmd.com/balance/guide/tips-to-control-stress#1  Let me know how you are doing.
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